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4 Phases of Learning… anything

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I get ridiculously impatient with myself when I’m learning something new.

Some madness within has me believe that as soon as I decide I want to know something, I should be masterful at it.

Like the decision alone is an automatic download of adequate information and experience.

Like Trinity downloading the pilot program in The Matrix, I could easily think of all sorts of programs I’d love to download.

Just plug me in…

But I’ve learned something about learning that made me stop and think.

There are four distinct phases to learning anything. There isn’t anything we become masterful at without going through each of these.

As you read them, consider something you’re trying to learn, or have already learned to do well. I believe you’ll recognize each of these phases as part of your process.

4 Phases of Learning

  • Phase I – unconscious incompetence (you don’t know what you don’t know)
  • Phase II – conscious incompetence (you’re becoming aware of what you don’t know)
  • Phase III – conscious competence (you’re becoming aware of your growing mastery)
  • Phase IV – unconscious competence (mastery is now just part of your reality)

Now think about something you’re currently learning. Figure out which phase you’re in. Then give yourself permission to learn.

Be patient with yourself and you’ll find that mastery comes more quickly and easily from your acceptance of the process.

With any luck, in time, we’ll all develop more patience and compassion for ourselves when we’re in the process of learning.

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